Friday, March 27, 2009

April is the new March

"Hey Cheapo! What types of fruits and vegetables are in season during the month of April?"

If you are not buying fresh produce that is "in season" each month - you should be! Off the top of your head, do you know what is fresh and available each month? Some of us have a slight idea: berries in the summer and squash in the fall - right? Well, sort of - if you like everything made from blueberries and butternut.

If you are not careful, fresh fruits and veggies can quickly eat up a grocery budget. Typically, the items that are "in season" will be
much lower in cost than other produce along with being "fresher." When doing your menu planning, try to find recipes that revolve around these items - you'll benefit both in quality and in the pocketbook.

Think about it for a second. If you are buying strawberries in December, and they really aren't in season until July or August, are they REALLY fresh? First of all, because they are being shipped probably from far away (depending on where you live), they have to be picked prematurely. Then, they will most likely have to be force ripened so they appear to be nice and red when they get to you. (red on the outside, white in the middle, right?) To top it off, you are probably paying way too much for poor quality fruit - if you can even consider that type of stuff fruit.

So, let's take a look at what will be in season for the month of April. Take a guess and then see how much of your list matches up with Cheapo's list. This, of course, is not all inclusive but can give you a good start. Click over to Budget Savvy for a great printable list that you can keep with
you throughout your shopping adventures.

  • Peak Season: Artichokes, Asparagus, Rhubarb, Spring Peas
  • In Season: Beets, Broccoli, Cabbages, Carrots, Cauliflower, Celery, Fennel, Lettuce, Spring/Green Onions, Radishes
  • Fruits: Bananas, Grapefruit, Haas Avocados, Mangoes, Pineapple
  • Season Ending: Lemons, Navel Oranges, Green Garlic, Fresh Spinach, Kale, Leeks, Shallots
Also, beginning in May, many areas will start hosting outdoor Farmer's Markets. These are wonderful places to go each week to get great local produce for even greater prices! The more local you buy, the cheaper the items will be AND you are helping the environment by not needing the use of truck shipping. Don't forget your green bags when you go!

Do you have something to add to this list or maybe a great recipe using one of these fantastic items? Leave a link or suggestion in the comments! Share with us and make us all happy!

Don't forget to enter the Freebie Deebie Giveaway for THREE Fiber One Health & Fitness Packages!


april @ faraboverubies said...

Thank you, I am always sure about some of that stuff...Strawberries in December, yum!

Tanya said...

OK, so aside from all that useful information about seasonal foods (which was great, btw!), I just have to say how cool that photography is. In the first picture, it looks like normal, attractive "still life" photography. Then when I scroll down and see it's a face, and then scroll back up, I saw it was just from a different angle. Nice! :)